November 2020
LISTENING TO THE HEARTBEAT OF GOD–
FROM PASTOR LAWRENCE
I appreciate gaining a new perspective. One recent night, we received a lovely and unexpected photo. The weather that particular day seemed to change from one season in the morning to another by evening. After nightfall, moisture hung in the air.

The night deepened, and as our friend traveled through uptown, she noticed that light was streaming through the Rose Window. That light met the water droplets in the air to create the effect of a beacon shining toward the sky.  

That inspired me to imagine that Jesus Christ walks past the Oxford Presbyterian Church every night, or every morning, or every Sunday. What would he see? Who would he see?

FROM PASTOR MARC’S DESK
OPC’S YOUTH GROUP RESPONDS TO THE 21-DAY CHALLENGE!

This past week I have been reflecting a bit on Paul’s words in his second letter to the church at Corinth.
    
“All of us, with unveiled faces...are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord, the Spirit.”
    -2 Corinthians 3:18

To God be the glory for such a legacy of faithfulness from generation to generation!
Thanks be our Living Lord for these and so many others in our congregation whose very lives and witness shine as a beacon in the darkest times. 

Together, let us continue to be transformed and invite others into our ministry as we Seek God, Serve Others and Share Christ’s Love with All. 

When Jesus walks through Oxford, may he see his church shining for all the world to see.

UPCOMING EVENTS

November 8: Congregational meeting after worship to elect officers

November 8:  1s t New Member Experience meeting

November 15:  Stewardship Sunday

November 22:  New Member Sunday

November 29: First Sunday of Advent


For the latest information on upcoming ministry events, please check: 
 
The Church Calendar  
 
Visit Our Facebook Page
 
or contact the Church Office.
CHRISTIAN EDUCATION
"Faith and Science" at Youth Group!

Throughout the month of October, Youth Group will be doing a 3-week series entitled "Faith and Science!" This three-week series includes a special Q&A with Pastor Lawrence and Pastor Marc in the "hot seat" answering questions from our young people about how faith and science relate to one another.

On Sunday, October 25th, the Youth Group are meeting in the Seminary Building for a special "Social Distance Cinema" screening of "Cosmos: The Immortals" starring astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse-Tyson at 6:30 P.M. with a short discussion to follow.

Please note: all seating in the Seminary Building will be spaced apart for social distancing. Facial coverings are required! In observance with safety precautions, we will NOT be serving dinner this Sunday...so be sure to eat before you come!

On Sunday, November 1st, Dick Munson will be leading the youth group in a Walk in the Woods (weather permitting) at 1:00 P.M. (please note the time change this week). The youth will meet at the parking lot of the Hueston Woods State Nature Preserve on Loop Road. You should plan on walking for about two hours and dress for being outdoors!

    Confirmation Class Kicks Off This Fall!

Confirmation class kicked off Monday, October 19th with a virtual informational meeting for youth and parents and will be meeting every other Monday evening at 7:45 P.M. This year's class is taught by Pastor Marc, Carla Blackmar Rice, and Carrie Ann Sharitt and will include a hybrid of virtual and in-person gatherings. Facial coverings are required for all in-person gatherings! If you would like to learn more, please contact Pastor Marc.
CCNS STATUS

CCNS will plan to reopen on January 5, 2020, even though Talawanda families have the option of returning earlier. We are continuing to work with the ODJFS licensing specialist, CCNS Staff, OPC, CCNS families and CCNS board as we prepare for our inspection and reopening date. I will be able to provide more information and updates in November. 
If you have any questions or concerns please contacts me. Thanks, 

Sarah Lake
CCNS Director & Teacher 
NEW MEMBER EXPERIENCE
THIS FALL!
 
If you are interested in learning more about membership at Oxford Presbyterian Church, we invite you to join us for a New Member Experience facilitated by Pastor Marc. We will be meeting in the downstairs community room of the Seminary Building (as well as over Zoom for those who would prefer to connect virtually) on November 8 and 15 at 11:30 a.m. New Member Sunday will be held on November 22. If you would like to attend the meeting in person or over Zoom, please contact the church office to sign-up so that we can help connect you in the way that best meets your needs.
OXFORD PRESBYTERIAN WOMEN
Tuesday Afternoon Circle.
The Tuesday Afternoon Circle will meet Tuesday November 17 at 12:30 on the main floor of the Seminary. Carol Schaber will lead Lesson Number 3 from Into the Light Finding Hope through Prayers of Lament, Pat Gifford has Mission Yearbook and Karen Shearer will conduct Least Coin. 
Please note the change of time and place. All women are invited to attend. Please wear a mask and bring your own beverage

Tuesday (monday) Evening (afternoon) Circle
Meets via Zoom on the second Monday of the month at 1:30.  If you wish to join this study please let Sue Wilson know.
You Can Help Change Lives

Since, 1888, the Thank Offering has been changing peoples’ lives.  The offering was started as an annual Thank offering to our Lord, expressing gratitude for special blessings.  Since its inception, 26 million dollars have been given to nearly 1700 causes worldwide. A few of the 15 projects supported for the 2020 Thank Offering are:  

Reach the Hungry– brings food to outlying locales where there is no food pantry
Team Refugee Youth- provides help for refugee middle and high school youth
CommunityHealing Circle– provides safe places to share/heal for those suffering domestic violence; and EthiopianGidada Theological College– focuses on increasing education of women to facilitate development for the whole society. 

This life-changing offering makes a difference. Please show your gratitude and share your blessings by giving as generously as possible and writing a check to Oxford Presbyterian Women (note Thank Offering on check). Send your check to
OPC, 101 N. Main, Oxford, OH  45056 or
to Debbie Davidson, OPWTreasurer, 6027 Vereker Dr., Oxford, OH  45056, 
or give electronically by clicking on GIVING on the church web page at oxfordpresbychurch.org and selecting Thank Offering

Look for your special mailing with a Thank Offering envelope and more information.

Nancy Moeckel and Jean O’Connell for Oxford Presbyterian Women Coordinating Committee
CARES AND CONCERNS

Betty Barnhart, Jim Baer, Rodger Cromer, John Curry, Bob Douglass, Nancy Gates, Genee Hesse, Ruth Miller, Jan Reinhart, Becky Rudolph, Sarah Soika, John and Jean Woodruff

Keep these friends in your prayerS
SERVICE OF WITNESS TO THE RESURRECTION 
JOAN M. TECKMAN

Joan M. Teckman passed away on Wednesday, October 7, 2020 at Woodland Country Manor. Joan was a lifelong member of Oxford Presbyterian Church. She brought a great deal of energy and dedication to our ministry including her role as volunteer parish nurse for many years. 

Please continue to lift up Joan’s family in your prayers including Charles, Nancy, Dave, Tim and Jeff.

The service was live streamed on Facebook. If you were unavailable at that time, you can still witness the service.  Go to OPC on Facebook and scroll until you find the link to Videos.
A WORD FROM THE STEWARDSHIP CAMPAIGN COMMITTEE

Oxford Presbyterian Women’s commitment to mission is quite simply extraordinary. Through mission giving and fundraisers OPW serves others through generous support of mission partners in the community and around the world. 

A favorite OPW fundraiser is the Cookie Walk. This event in early December features handcrafted cookies and specialty candy made by the wonderful bakers and artisans in our congregation. Fairly traded coffee, tea, and gifts from SERRV round out this sweet mission fundraiser that deepens our congregational commitment in “Serving Others.” 
COMMUNITY MEALS UPDATE

Pastor Lawrence spoke of the community meals in his sermon on October 18. Numerous and varied members of our town, those who work at Miami, those between jobs, those in retirement, those who live in the countryside and those who live in Oxford, have partaken of the wonderful food many members of our church have supplied.
 
But now, we are held at bay, it seems, by this lengthening pandemic. But our part in the community meal has continued,
(our highly motivated meal movers)

however truncated, by taking Subway subs, chips and our own homemade cookies to tenants at the Park View Arms. Bill and Katya Fisher drove out to Wal-Mart to buy disposable facemasks and hand sanitizers (added to packs of toilet paper dropped off by Carol Schaber), picked up the sandwiches, and headed back into town for deliveries on Wednesday, October 14. 
 
The interactions are short, but those we deliver to are quite thankful, and it does seem that having someone come by and have a quick conversation does some good.
 
These deliveries of a quick meal and needed dry goods come because of the support from the Third Thursday donations. All those coins add up, and they have helped us keep the Community Meals and dry goods happening. Thank you.

Bill Fisher
OCTOBER SESSION MEETING

Candace Crist, elder of the month, gave the opening devotions based on “Grace”. Biblical references included Proverbs 31 and the fourth chapter of Colossians.

There will be a congregational meeting on November 8, 2020 for the purpose of electing officers. 

The phased reopening has gone well. Each of the three Sundays that the sanctuary has been open has seen an increased number of worshippers.
Worship and Music committee is endeavoring to keep as much tradition in the Advent and Christmas services as possible, yet adhering to pandemic guidelines.

The Eradicating Systemic Poverty group is active in contacting Oxford agencies to learn of needs and ways that church and community can work together.

The new audiovisual system has been installed and used for the first time in the October 18 worship service. Kudos to those folks who have been working on this for a good long time.

Judy Fisher
Clerk
COMMITTEES OF SESSION
Highlights and Take FIves
(While the notes here may seem sparse, you will see many articles throughout the newsletter describing creations, ideas, outcomes and plans which came from these committees and their devoted members.)

CHRISTIAN EDUCATION

Reminder that new/barely used/in good shape shoes are being collected. A collection box is outside the church doors, under the portico. 

Virtual Sunday School Curriculum has been received (from Cokesbury) and will be implemented.

Teachers for 3rd-5th classroom are needed.

Adult Education 
Lawrence reported the 21-Day Challenge has been a wonderful experience. A two-part book discussion with the first book currently being discussed: Life of the Beloved by Henri Nouwen. The second book discussion will take place in November for the book Life Together by Dietrich Bonhoeffer. 

Celebration at the Manger 
Cannot occur as it has in the past due to COVID restrictions. The possibility of having children and young adult participants individually act out/perform their part, have it videoed, and then have all parts spliced together for a production has been in discussion. Pastor Marc and Carla Blackmar Rice are heading up the production team 

WORSHIP AND MUSIC

Pastor Lawrence led the committee in a study session based on Section W-1.01 (Christian Worship: An Introduction) of the Directory for Worship in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Book of Order. The specific topic examined was the theology underlying our worship.

A first discussion of the 2021 Budget was held. A final budget proposal will be prepared at the November meeting.
Planning was undertaken for October, November and early December worship services. Special emphasis was placed on Heritage Sunday, All Saints Sunday and the four Sundays of Advent. 

Kent Peterson made several creative suggestions regarding how we might celebrate Christmas Eve under the challenging circumstances of the pandemic.

TRUSTEES

Gutters and downspouts on the Seminary are completed. The final payment to the contractor will be made as soon as the presence of leaf guards can be confirmed. A small drone has been purchased to make this inspection. It will also be available for ongoing roof/gutter/chimney inspections on all OPC property. 

Women’s restroom toilets on the first floor are obsolete and malfunctioning, and parts are difficult to obtain. Nick will get a price quote and Trustees can authorize installing new toilets
Per a request from Sarah Lake, the foldable dividers in the CCNS room will be removed. 

Rick Bailey has agreed to serve as Chair of the Trustees beginning in 2021. 

STEWARDSHIP AND FINANCE

At the October meeting of the Stewardship and Finance (S&F) Committee, Katie Payne handed off leadership to Lisa Brunckhorst and Brent Bader as new co-chairs of S&F.As two veterans of the committee, Brent and Lisa will ensure a seamless leadership transition. Katie has asked for this as she needs to care for some issues on the home front. She is very appreciative of the support of the S&F Committee members, Nick Fears, and Pastor Lawrence.
CAN'T STOP NOW!

Several weeks ago, the stewardship campaign team met via conference call and talked about the generosity of OPC members to the ministry of our church. We talked about gifts of service and time, personal talents and financial resources, all activated by God, that meet our mission to seek, serve, and share Christ's love. "Well, said one team member, "we can't stop now!"

Indeed, Oxford Presbyterian Church does not stop. Even during this pandemic, efforts by mission and outreach continue and expand; Christia
education is developing new programs to meet the challenges of this different time; the worship committee is inventing new ways to enhance our worship services; the trustees continue to oversee repairs and new construction, along with the installation of a brand new AV system for the sanctuary; our deacons carry on with comfort missions and supplies for those in need; our new calls to care for creation and eliminate poverty in Oxford and beyond are already works in progress; stewardship and finance and endowment committees make sure OPC's financial resources are available to support our ministry. Pastor Lawrence and Pastor Marc develop new ways to lead our mission, assisted by amazing staff.

We are able to accomplish all this in these different and challenging times by the grace of God who activates our gifts for His work.  So, let's not stop now.  Let's continue on our OPC journey of generosity with our financial support in 2021. In a few weeks, the stewardship and finance committee will begin work on the budget for next year.  Our pledges will promise a future of continued service and invite new ways to share Christ's love.

Please send your pledge card - we hope before November 15 - or go online and pledge your support there.  If you've misplaced your pledge card, you may call the church office at 523-6364 to request a card to be mailed to you.

Thank you for your commitment for 2021. Our OPC journey won't stop because together, our gifts will continue to support the important work of our community of faith.
APPLYING THE GOLDEN RULE TO POLITICAL DISCOURSE

Even when there is a genuine desire to do so, it is sometimes very difficult to know how to practice the Golden Rule. This can be especially true in dealing with those who have different political views or who see the world from a different perspective. The “Golden Rule” that we should “treat others as we would like to be treated” clearly also applies to the world of politics; and yet we rarely hear a discussion of how to apply that rule in the midst of intense political debate. However, if enough people applied the Golden Rule to political discourse it could help change the way we talk to each other and perhaps even help break the stalemate that keeps us from addressing some of our most pressing national problems. 
For those who are interested in applying this central ethical principle to political discourse, the best place to begin is this question: How would I like others to behave towards me when I’m in a political discussion where there is disagreement? Different people would offer a range of answers, but some common responses to this question would probably be things like: show respect; listen; tell the truth; acknowledge areas of agreement; don't distort my position; don't question my motives or patriotism, etc. If those are the ways we want to be treated, then it makes it possible to begin to make a list of actions we can take to apply the Golden Rule in interactions with others. Below are two lists that may be helpful in trying to answer the question of how to apply the Golden Rule to political discussions. 
(Answer to the question of the month: whatever color your hair is.  “You are driving a bus…”)

To apply the Golden Rule in Political Discussions: 

I Will 
.   Always show respect for the other person
.   Listen patiently and with curiosity to understand another’s point of view—especially when there is disagreement
.    Use precise and truthful language that communicates my views without exaggerating
.   Look for areas of mutual agreement
.   Encourage others including our political leaders to be civil

I Won’t 

   Use inflammatory words, or derogatory names
  Interrupt the other
  Make broad generalizations about individuals or groups
  Assault the character of others or falsely impugn their motives
  Question another person’s beliefs, values, or patriotism
  Demonize or describe as enemies, those who hold political beliefs different from my own

Guidelines like these “do’s” and “don’ts” provide a way to think about what it really means to apply the Golden Rule when dealing with those of other political views. While each person must determine the specific actions they will take to “treat others as we want to be treated,” there is no denying the fact that, even in the contentious world of politics, we should do exactly that.
GoldenRule2020.org

Shared by Sue Wilson
OVER THE RIVER AND THROUGH THE WOODS”

originated from a poem written in 1844 titled "A Boy's Thanksgiving Day,” and includes the phrase “Hurrah for Thanksgiving Day."

Over the river and through the woods
To Grandfather's house we go.
The horse knows the way
To carry the sleigh
Through white and drifted snow.
Over the river and through the wood --
Oh, how the wind does blow!
It stings the toes
And bites the nose,
As over the ground we go.
Over the river and through the wood
To have a first-rate play.
Hear the bells ring,
Ting-a-ling-ling!
Hurrah for Thanksgiving Day!...
SPECIAL MUSIC FUND AND POINSETTIAS FUNDRAISER
 
The Worship and Music Committee of Session hopes to make each of the worship services as meaningful as possible. Congregational participation is a crucial ingredient in that effort. One example of participation is seen in the enthusiastic response to the opportunities to honor or memorialize others with the purchase of flowers to enhance the beauty of the sanctuary throughout the year, particularly at Christmas and Easter.

It has been suggested that opportunity be given to honor or memorialize others with a gift to the Special Music Fund in lieu of, or in addition to the purchase of flowers. The Special Music Fund is for the express purpose of providing a small honorarium for guest soloists or instrumentalists or musical events not included in the regular worship and music budget.

Contributions to this special fund will be welcome at any time, but members and friends of the church are invited to make contributions during the Christmas and Easter seasons. One may designate a person or persons to be memorialized or honored. Such gifts will be noted in the church bulletin.
COVID-19 MAY CURTAIL US BUT IT CAN’T STOP US!! 
Due to the coronavirus, many changes have to take place.

SAFE HAVEN FARMS  Unfortunately, we will not be going out to Safe Haven Farms to decorate their community room for the Christmas season. This has always been a fun event for us, and it has brought a lot of joy to the farmers. We will miss going out there this year!

THE MITTEN AND SHOE TREEwill not be set up this year. We want our congregation to stay safe by not having to touch the tree, mittens, and shoes. But, we still want your monetary donations to bring happiness to many children in our community and in Russia. Therefore, please give to this worthy cause by mailing in your check made payable to our church. Note on it whether the money should go for mittens, shoes or both. 

The Mitten money will go to The Resource Center to buy presents for community children who may not be receiving gifts this year. Once again the parents, under supervision from the Resource Center, will shop at Wal-Mart for gifts for their children. Donations for these children should be $40-50.  

The shoe money will be sent to Russia for shoes for the orphan children. These children will receive correct sizes and styles appropriate for them. In the past, Igor Masakov has sent us pictures of elated children wearing their new shoes. Only $12 will help to purchase a pair of shoes.  

With your help, we can bring much happiness and joy to many children. Checks or cash can be given through December 13th. Thank you for your contributions!

Karen Shearer
TREES FOR LIFE – Postponed until Spring 2021
 
The pandemic has postponed the distribution of seedlings for the Treesfor Life program until the Spring of 2021.

However, this just means that the trees being given away next Spring will be bigger, have better root systems, and will be of greater variety than previously planned.  

Be of good cheer for Arbor Day of 2021 will have even greater significance than we expected. Trees for Life will be back and better than ever!
 
Dick Munson
STORIES NEEDED FOR THE DECEMBER NEWSLETTER

We all know how much Pastor Lawrence loves to hear peoples’ stories.  Do you have a Christmas story you can share?  Do you have a fun family tradition or a sentimental one?  Does your family ALWAYS do that, or eat that? Do you always tell that one story each year?  Share a story for the December newsletter.  Send your stories to Nancy Moeckel  moeckenj@miamioh.edu by November 20. 

I’ll start us out.  I don’t like the smell of pipe smoke much, even if it’s supposed to be the good smellin’ stuff.  But the year I was 13, my grandmother had had a stroke, so she and Grandpa (we called him Pamp!) couldn’t be with us as they usually were each Christmas. I remember, oh so well, how I missed the smell of that pipe! 

Christmas will be different this COVID-19 year, but we still have our loving traditions and memories to hold on to and to pass on.
No it is not the Bat signal. Trustees were able to get the Rose Window light fixed. It is on a timer.

Scott Parkinson (aka Bruce Wayne)
Photographer and Commentator


Here are the new railings the Trustees had installed on the west side of the Memorial Building.  One day those who used this entrance to attend church will get to again.

Scott Parkinson
Oxford Presbyterian Church Staff
Office Hours: 8:30-4:30, M-F
Telephone: 513-523-6364
Fax: 513-523-8215
Seminary Building: 513-523-7411
Pastor: Lawrence Bartel

Associate Pastor: Marc van Bulck

Music Director: Kent Peterson

Organist: Lynn Jacobs

Pastor Emeritus: Dr. Joseph R. Hookey

Parish Associate: Rev. Diane Ziegler

Clerk: Julia R. Fisher

Administrative Assistant: 
         Bridgite Dickerson:         office@oxfordpresbychurch.o
Financial Secretary: Nick Fears

Youth Director: Currently Seeking

Director/Teacher C.C.N.S.: 
Sarah Lake:                                                          ccnsoxfordpreschool@gmail .com    

Newsletter Editor: 
Nancy Moeckel,    moeckenj@miamioh.edu

Custodian: Priscilla Parks

Sexton: Nick Fears

NOVEMBER BIRTHDAYS

2      Jim Baer
3      Chuck Crain
3       Bill Thomas
5      Matt Todd
7      Griffin Barrington
7      Rich Drewes
7      Savannah Hofer
9      Bill Jenkins
9      Larry Johnson
9      Johanna Reinhart
10   Kelsey Listerman
10    Carol Richmond
11    Noble Toney
13    Pete Roberts
15    Mike Handy
15    Chase Walter
16    John Curry
16    Scott Shriver
23    Roger Gates
23    Russ Logsdon
24    David Feazell
25    Vicki Shriver
26    Betty Barnhart
27    Barbara Skipper
28    Anthony Sunderhaus




 
NOVEMBER NICETIES

Veteran’s Day, when we honor those who have served in the United States Armed Forces, falls annually on November 11. It also coincides with Armistice Day and Remembrance Day, which mark the end of World War I.

The first mechanically ventilated underwater tunnel in the world, the Holland Tunnel, opened to traffic on November 13, 1927.

Jonathan Swift, author of "Gulliver's Travels" was born November 30, 1667. 

Which brings us to some Tom Swifties for your viewing pleasure:

"Don't you love sleeping outdoors," Tom said intently.

"I lost my trousers," said Tom   expansively.

"I just dropped the toothpaste," said Tom crestfallenly.

"The thermostat is set too high," said  Tom heatedly.

QUESTION OF THE MONTH
You are driving a bus. At the first stop, two women get on. At the second stop, three men get on and one woman gets off. At the third stop, three kids and their mom get on, and a man gets off. The bus is grey, and it is raining outside. What color is the bus driver’s hair?

Find the answer hidden somewhere in the newsletter.  Made you read, Made you read!



We welcome your feedback on the newsletter. We LOVE your feedback like Velma loves to snuggle.What is missing from the newsletter that you would like to see? Is there anything you like about it? Let me know. moeckenj@miamioh.edu. Now here is your bonus for reading this section: What’s the best type of music to play during Thanksgiving dinner? Plymouth Rock!